Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Making Matches


I'm pretty good at starting a fire--as long as I have a match to start off with. While we have stored up several boxes of wooden matches, it is interesting to learn about how to make your own matches. In 2006, Popular Science published a short article on making strike anywhere matches. However, the author (Theodore Gray) has more detailed directions (and warnings) at his own web site. (Similar instructions using red phosphorus here).

Here are instructions for converting your safety matches into strike anywhere matches (which basically is scrape the red phosphorus off the striker strip on the box and then make a red phosphorus mixture as described in the instructions above). (See also here).

Some history on matches (and more warnings) here.

Of course, the biggest issue is obtaining the red phosphorus because the DEA regulates its sale. Apparently it is used in the manufacture of methamphetamine.

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